Tuesday, 22 November 2011

On Gifts...cohesion’s golden glaze!

'Laurentian Evening Crescendo' Acrylic on Canvas 48"X 60"

Auditory symphonic landscapes intersected my age nine life when a small cardboard blue turntable box with sound quality to match, arrived at our rural prairie Alberta dwelling. 
Undulating rotating grooves of warping vinyl platters black...
Circular pre-digital vibrations...brought thinly to life...
Beethoven, Tchaikovsky and Stravinsky.
Harmonic wonder...melodies sown...
Strains of scherzo’s scented significance...
Counter melodies wafted, inhaled...
Prairie skies...trumpets towering crescendo...
Viola’s vast grasslands shimmer pacific green...
Woodwinds to percussion crash...wandering brook to waterfall.
Cello’s earthy full throated mist ascends...waters edge to virgin pine...
Home of haunting northern loon.
Imaginations refrain...journey’s modulating shift begins...
Short years later...a teenager, sits high, alone, enraptured...last row...Toronto’s Massey Hall balcony. 
Concert follows magic concert!
Seiji Ozawa, long haired famed Japanese maestro fences oxygen with saber like baton...auditory eruptions...volcanic reds and crash...then...softly repairs to trickled timbre...turquoise whispering...quiet cobalt streams...tantalizing adagio to worlds afar...counterpoints divergent diversity clarified to single voice...Toronto Symphony Orchestra. 
Sounds reverberating potency!
It was here I recognized the value of the original versus the replicated. Layered passionate deep versus skins epidermal shallow. To run ones finger over a textured painting versus the slippery surface of an offset print. To know the hand of the artist danced leaving DNA across that exact surface rather than a metal mastodon spitting hundreds of duplicate images an hour. To be present, touching deep vibration, textured strains showering senses made the ‘trade’ worthwhile. 
The ‘trade’...endless grocery weeks of teenaged shelf stocking...continuously created end-aisled tin thin canned castles...all exchanged for ninety moments thick with awe. 
Forty-five years later, part of my daily diet of soul cleansing sound emits through tiny ear buds as classical music engulfs mornings caffeine reality.
Lest you think I am moved only by high symphonic skies, John, Paul, Ringo and George, the famous Fab four, at Gardens emblazoned with Canada’s blue motif, or Antonio Benedetto the painter crooner, wailed and strummed eclectic chords into my early sixties heart. Imagination wandered its winding path towards diversity. 
Syncopated jazz, big band, blues and funk, rock n roll’s metal wild wail, Latin rhythms steamy cadence, French cafes’ accordion tears or Gregorian chants echoing cathedrals ancient abutments find various place settings at my soul’s full table. 
Sitting mid back, silently in Paris’ Notre Dame Cathedral under towering grand organ’s growl, shook me to the core. Today, a contemporary worship band, ancient hymn, or soft interpretation of some fresh folk or love song, each pour individual rivulets of healing, springs deep laden aquifer toward a souls dry and crusty recess. 
What however of todays blog on gifts united and cohesions golden glaze?
Whether philharmonic grand, jazz combo three, heavy metal or Caribbean Reggae, all have similar challenges. Each member comes to music making with a disparate paradigm...standing artistically alone. Yet, combined as a pack of collaborators, they meld, bending into others play...from solo’s ego flight to conjoined harmony, humbling toward the other.
Orchestra’s concertmaster ensures tonal continuity. No matter the genre this simple profound standard must be adhered to. The philharmonic benchmark is note ‘A’ played by the Oboe as foundational truth for each member...
Things must be in tune! 
Jazz brings capriccio improvisation far outside any fenced restriction. In this most difficult of musical genres, we enter the world of genius. Here, musicians innately sense the next players direction, fusing on the fly. Despite freedoms range, leaders still set a vision to meld toward.
Islands we are not! 
Some lead, each plays, all should listen...integral integration to works final culmination. 
Gifts standing brilliant purple need dashes aside of yellow’s compliment to enhance its cause. Mixed with complimentary’s twin, myriads of neutral color graduations impart cohesive magic.
We can decide our note is the most important thing to constantly blow, whether written into score or not. We may think being the only one out of tune is just fine as long as it is loud and incessant. A single player off beat sets our collective teeth on edge...around the bend! When players insist playing their part always as the solo or off a different score, the critics write their sad reviews and end arrives chaotically inglorious. Instead of ushering in heaven, we leave with discordant disappointment!
Unity and beauty require listening closely to the other, melding diversity into humility’s cohesive auditory or visual glow to cover jarring dissonance. 
Playing our part, using supernaturally assigned gifts, paying close attention to rests, cadence and interpretation results in unity that brings masterful peace. 
Adherence to conductors authoritative interpretive vision is key to beautiful unified results. When unity occurs, the audience exults in joyous response...sinews are strengthened and new adherents desire to return with ongoing active participation.
Embrace deeply your furnished supernatural gifts, given to play, not locked away in dust of waste. Standards each set very high.
Engage all full...
Bow to string...
Fingers flash to ivory’s touch...
Sticks to drum skins...tattoo tempos flourish...
Run with riffs, guitars neck in deep massage...
Whatever gift received to play, join the genre that wears you well...made to measure, just for you and kingdom benefit! You may fit philharmonic grand and conversely into metal wild. Enjoy your part and genre, serve there well, but please, don’t insist that your particular styles predisposition is the only that brings value to kingdom purposes.
Take a peak outside the box! Stop and consider the natural world that speaks voluminously of the Creators character as consummate diversity. Whatever gifting you are called to play, engage fully with unique excellence, but please, don’t insist on being a tuba in a string quartette...it never works!
“How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!” 
Psalm 133:1 (NIV)
“Now there are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but it is the same Holy Spirit who is the source of them all. There are different kinds of service in the church, but it is the same Lord we are serving. There are different ways God works in our lives, but it is the same God who does the work through all of us. A spiritual gift is given to each of us as a means of helping the entire church.” 
1 Corinthians 12: 4-7 (NLT)

Soli Deo Gloria
J. Douglas Thompson...SDG
Copyright 2011

1 comment:

  1. Very moved by your thoughts on unity within diversity, at every level, the arts, music, and the Body of Christ. I wonder if evangelical denominations could disappear if we really believed and lived that?